Dust and Ashes by Anatoli Naumovich Rybakov
(Arbat Trilogy, Vol 3)

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Synopsis

The epic sequel to the best-selling Children of the Arbat follows the experiences of a Soviet tank commander in World War II as he fights his way from Siberia to Stalingrad and onward to Berlin.
 

About Anatoli Naumovich Rybakov

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Rybakov grew up and continues to live in Moscow. He worked as a transport engineer, both civilian and military, from 1934 to 1946. After World War II he turned to literature, drawing in part on his previous professional experiences, in the "industrial novel" The Drivers (1950), which was awarded the Stalin Prize, and in Yekaterina Voronina (1955). He also wrote three short novels about a teenage boy, all narrated by the youthful protagonist. Rybakov first attracted international attention with Heavy Sand (1978), a highly readable novel about a Jewish family in the Soviet Union between 1910 and 1943. The subject was unusual for the time, but Rybakov's handling of it, though honest in many respects, was undercut by subtle, yet unmistakable, political orthodoxy. More recently, he has begun to publish a series of novels about the terror of the Stalin years, starting with Children of Arbat, on which he worked from the end of the 1950s until 1982. It was announced for publication twice, in 1966 and in 1978, before finally appearing in 1987. Regarded as a milestone of glasnost, it follows a group of young Muscovites to show the effects of the gathering political storm in the 1930s. Rybakov continues to trace the fate of his protagonists---and outline the period's bloody history---in the next novel in the series, Fear. Solomon Volkov is the award-winning author of several notable books about Russian culture, including "St. Petersburg: A Cultural History" and "Shostakovich and Stalin," published worldwide. After moving to the United States from the Soviet Union, he became a cultural commentator for Voice of America and later for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, broadcasting to the USSR (and later, Russia), where he discussed contemporary artistic developments in his former homeland. He lives in New York City with his wife, Marianna. The prizewinning translator Antonina W. Bouis is known for her work with contemporary Russian literature.
 
Published March 1, 1996 by Little Brown & Co (T). 473 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History, War. Fiction

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The concluding volume of Rybakov's trilogy (Children of the Arbat, 1988, and Fear, 1992) carries into WW II its relentless examination of Russia under Stalinist tyranny and its fictional biography of (one assumes) the author's alter ego, Sasha Pankratov, now risen to authority and eminence as a S...

Mar 13 1996 | Read Full Review of Dust and Ashes (Arbat Trilogy...

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